First Baptist Church, Cobden IL
Sunday, June 16, 2019
200 South Walker St. Cobden, IL 62920

Study in the Scriptures: Matt Hartline

                 A Study in the Scriptures 
                      -with Pastor Matt


The Noahic Covenant (Part Three)


We are back together this month in our study of Covenant Theology. We are still diving into the study of the Noahic Covenant, and this month we come to Part Three where we will be looking at God establishing His covenant with Noah and develop our understanding of it biblically in greater detail.

God Establishes His Covenant with Noah

God promises to establish a covenant with Noah before he enters the ark (Gen. 6:18). This covenant became established when Noah gets off the ark, and it is made with Noah, his descendants, and all of creation (Gen. 9:9-17). What we see in the first mention is a promise of a covenant, a "full and sufficient assurance," writes Nehemiah Coxe, "that God will make a covenant, but is done so by way of promise." Does this language sound familiar? If not, bear with me. The benefit of this promise immediately guaranteed, says Coxe, "the preservation of Noah and all who were with him on the ark." Moreover, this immediate benefit was two-fold:

1.      It provided temporal salvation from the flood.

2.      It provided eternal salvation. In the ark, it contained Noah and his son Shem from whom the promised seed of the woman would come who would crush the head of the serpent (cf. Lk. 3:23, 36). Coxe would go on to say that "the salvation of the whole church was included in it."

The Noahic Covenant Developed

            We now want to look at what happened after Noah and his family came out of the ark. This account can be found in Genesis 8:20-9:28. Coxe points out three main points of interest in looking at God's covenant with Noah.

            First, before there was any further transaction of God with Noah, he offers a sacrifice to the Lord which smelled to the Lord as a sweet sacrifice. If you compare this with Ephesians 5:2, where the phrase "sweet savor" is used, it signifies God's acceptance of his offering. Noah's sacrifice and his faith were typological of Christ's perfect faith and the giving of Himself as a sacrifice to the Lord.

             Second, in the blessing of Noah, Coxe writes, we see "a gracious purpose of God's heart." Genesis 9:8, 9 says, "Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 'Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you... '"

            Third, there are particular benefits given to mankind by this covenant.

1.      Fruitfulness to replenish the earth.

2.      Dominion over the creatures, and free use for food.

3.      Assurance that the judgment which they now escaped would not be repeated.

4.      The visible sign of the rainbow was appointed to be the visible sign and token of this covenant.

Coxe makes a few other brief points in this covenantal transaction between God and Noah.

1.      The goodness and forbearance of God that was promised in the first covenant was now ratified by a "solemn covenant." This ensured the successive generation of mankind of the promised seed, which gave greater assurance to the church.

2.      There is a spiritual use to the faithful in the foreshadowing of the covenant of grace by Christ "and its ratification in the blood of his sacrifice." Coxe writes, "By this we are saved from the curse and restored to a sanctified right in creature comforts and the hope of eternal life."

3.      This covenant is made with Noah, his sons, and their descendants after them for perpetual generations. This is seen and applied in two ways:

a)      Future generations to the end of the world are just as much involved in this covenant and receive the benefits of this covenant.

b)      At the same time, although the grace of the New Covenant was "spiritually held out, " as Coxe says in this covenant, yet, the grace and blessing were not "by this means bestowed on all mankind." God's covenant with Noah was universal, and all mankind receives the temporal/earthly benefits, it is only the elect who receive the spiritual blessings by faith, people of every tribe tongue, and nation, who are born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor the will of man, but of God. (cf. Rev. 5:9; Jn. 1:13).


Next month, when we come back in Part Four, we will conclude the Noahic Covenant by looking at the blessing and curse to Noah’s sons and with the tower of Babel and the confusion of tongues. 

For the supremacy of Christ in all things,

Brother Matt